Perspectives from ISB

After over two decades of corporate life, Amit realized he had reached the end of the proverbial tunnel. Doing the same kind of work was taking him nowhere, and he is not one who likes to restrict himself. A renewed purpose surged within. It was time for a venture of his own that had been smouldering within him for long. He turned down the offer to lead the IT for Eicher manufacturing plants for their trucking unit to realise his vision. But there was one hitch. Before he embarked on the alternative path, he needed to equip himself with certain fundamentals, especially of finance. He signed up for PGPMAX at the Indian School of Business (ISB). ‘My agenda for life is that if you wish to do something you must take the risk,’ he says.

An alumnus of Co’ 2015, Amit Singal is a serial entrepreneur, a startup strategist, an investor, and founder and CEO of Nexus HealthTech Private Limited. Amit has structured a Radiology/Imaging Company now in expansion mode; Amit is a Board Member in it. He is also a Mentor to Sainergie Consultants (IT and Learning Initiative) and has to his credit the setting up of two more companies during and post ISB days.

Amit saw tremendous value in the PGPMAX programme. The course structure, according to him, is such that it balances well with the corporate and business lives of the students. ‘The professors are illustrious. Some of them have been in the thick of things and have experienced the grind of setting up and running a business. They understand what an entrepreneur means. The weight of their words is not clear when you are listening to them but you realise their significance when you are in a situation.’ Amit formed some excellent relationships for life at ISB, and a few of those people became his business partners. The first few orders in his first company were from his ISB friends. Whenever on the campus he would spend hours knowing his classmates, talking to them, partying with them. ‘You get a better standing if they see value in you and you see value in them. There’s a child within all of us. How we keep that child alive is up to us because it is one of the reasons to get the relationships going and get us a new circle of friends.’

He goes by the adage that life is simple but we make it complicated and that every time an event happens, it happens for the good. ‘I am a firm believer in God. God may have thought something bigger for you and if He thinks you need a certain experience—good or bad—He throws in some bends in your life.’

His latest adventure Nexus HealthTech is built on the principles of ethics and empathy. It is in the business of carving out IT products to connect the various dots of society. The app MAATRI is an effort to empower the mother, ease their journey of motherhood and help her manage the family health and other related information.

‘I am not a doctor but I know how business is run, how people behave, how people react. As a leader, I must maintain the flexibility to understand my doctors, my patients.’ Leaders must talk the language the team understands, he emphasises. One can build healthy teams by the way one deals with people and understands their emotions. Amit’s understanding of business and the nuances of human behaviour in business are straightforward. He gives the benefit of the doubt to peoples’ actions and reactions because he says anyone can have a bad day in business and one-act must not be the cause to label their nature or character. When taking a decision, a leader must bear the consequences of it and the ego must take a back seat for a balanced approach. ‘Business is a different ball game altogether with its own inevitable ups and downs. Someone once told me not to get emotionally attached to my business. Business is business after all. It’s not your life.’ Peer pressure, he says, can overwhelm you and can lead to business collapse. ‘I have never felt squeezed by peer pressure though.’

Amit has always been a fan of ISB. ‘The school provides you with the best of environments. What best you extract out of the opportunities depends on you. Getting the best return on investment, learning and unlearning are all within you.’ He is fond of reading, especially biographies of great men. He is writing a book on his journey, and his experiences at ISB. ‘I have just one life, so why shouldn’t I make the best of it? I live in the present and planning my life is not my way.’ He keeps himself fit and his urge to learn newer things has driven him to learn to cook.

His advice to the current batch of PGPMAX is that one must introspect and get to know themselves better. One needs to learn where to plug the gap if one must grow. ‘Each of us has a unique journey, each has a different thought process. Just because someone else has achieved something doesn’t mean it’s your destiny too. You have been given a platform. Where you intend to go after this journey would depend entirely on what you derive out of the programme and the environment.’

– Amit Singal, PGPMAX 2015; Founder & CEO for Nexus HealthTech Pvt Ltd.

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